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Old 03-30-2015, 11:33 PM
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zkaiser zkaiser is offline
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1st time posting, need suggestions on routing LV wiring

Hi, I've got a question that could use some suggestions for answers.
I have a very high end home, a client of mine owns and I will be completely revamping the landscape lighting bringing it up to par after 20 years of neglect and abuse by the team of gardeners that blow through the compound weekly.
My client wants me to somehow come up with a way to physically indicate the routing of the Low V cable buried throughout the flower beds and and ferns, trees, etc... so that the gardeners don't cut it or dig it up, when they are replanting the annuals and perennials around the acre and a half front and back yards. But, in her words "can't be obvious or noticeable to anyone unless in the garden itself".
How am I going to do this? Trails of crushed oyster shells, small river stones,? I'm an amazing electrician and have a good eye for landscape lighting and lighting in general but, I'm not a landscape designer or architect. Please, any suggestions would be much appreciated and I'm willing to contribute my knowledge if someone needs in return, obviously.
Thanks
zkaiser
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Old 03-30-2015, 11:51 PM
Chris J Chris J is offline
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I can tell you how to locate and mark the wire path, but I'm not sure about a viable answer to mark the wire path permanently. Maybe a string of some type of plant material like Mondo grass? This one will be difficult to answer without seeing the property, especially after seeing where the wire paths are located and how they transit through the property. It might be better to just locate the wire, meet with the gardeners for training and put the lady on a maintenance plan. It might be easier to simply fix things as needed instead of creating a spaghetti puzzle in her landscape.
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Old 03-30-2015, 11:58 PM
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Mondragon Lawn Serv Mondragon Lawn Serv is offline
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That's a heck of a challenge. I guess first find the wire/wires mark them and then find appropriate markings wether it be plants rocks etc etc. I would think a landscape shouldn't get much work digging wise for a maintenance crew to always tear something up. Maybe a rewire of the whole property might be a better solution as you'll have more control
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:42 AM
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RFID markers or magnetic marking tape would be my first choices.

We've also used plastic coated metal washers attached to the wire with plastic zip ties for locating with a metal detector.

Locating the wire path should be easy as most lighting wires are installed pretty shallow IMHO.

For locating the wire path a 521 or pro 871 would do nicely but so would a 508s, a pro 300, pro 7-800 or 501s.

If you decide on RFID, dynatel 2273 or EMS fits nicely.

Best of luck to you
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:43 AM
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zkaiser zkaiser is offline
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Thank You both for your suggestions.
To respond to a couple of things mentioned, I have some photos I could share, I kinda like the moss idea. The walk through with the gardeners is an idea I had already thought of and plan on implementing that as I am in process as well as afterwards.
The job is not going to get into too much rewiring. Most of it is still buried and in working condition and the need to keep from tearing up lawn and plant life is a main goal and the routing is somewhat obvious to anyone with some experience that knowing where the transformers are located and where the existing fixtures are located that are fed from those xfrmrs. Its mainly replacing xfrmrs, broken flood fixtures and pot lights, adding as few more in key locations where focal point trees have been added since originally landscaped. As well as relocating /focusing locations where things have grown over the fixtures with age.
I'm trying to get LED fixtures to replace as much as I can to cut down on the energy bill but, I'm concerned with color and softness that only an incandescent can throw or halogen with color filters or diffusion. But, I'm going to buy some different lights and do some night reconnaissance missions and do some placement and try different lamps, ie: LED, halogen(mr16) and incandescent. There is about 40 fixtures, 4 styles - par 38 flood, MR16 wide and narrow spots, quartz, and moonlite tree overhead lights. The moonlight tree lights aren't working and don't know what type they are yet.
It should be relatively cut and dry, only a two places where I have no power where the xfrmr is working and all xfrmrs are controlled by the old Leviton time clock receptacles from back in the '80's with the tiny little dials on the face to be controlled from your landline phone or your Motorola Brick cell phone and the main controlled module tied into the landline so you could call ahead from your limo on your way home from a club or the airport and turn on the lights and Jacuzzi and impress your date. LOL Oh, the eighties, Hahahahaha.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:45 AM
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Thanks to the poster that squeezed in under the wire while I was writing.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:50 AM
Chris J Chris J is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zkaiser View Post
I'm trying to get LED fixtures to replace as much as I can to cut down on the energy bill but, I'm concerned with color and softness that only an incandescent can throw or halogen with color filters or diffusion.
Don't get too caught up in that opinion because of a lack of knowledge. LED technology has come a long way and, with a little research, I think you will find that there are LED lamps and/or integrated LED fixtures that can easily mimic the effects you are looking for with incandescent or halogen lamps.
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:52 AM
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1idejim 1idejim is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zkaiser View Post
Thanks to the poster that squeezed in under the wire while I was writing.
Pm me when you get privileges and I'll help you as much as I can via the phone. I don't require a fee for my assistance though as I'm not a professional lighting guy
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Old 03-31-2015, 12:57 AM
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zkaiser zkaiser is offline
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Thanks again and I'll take you up on that offer Jim. I'll post a visitor message on your profile.
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Old 03-31-2015, 03:23 AM
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Originally Posted by zkaiser View Post
Thanks again and I'll take you up on that offer Jim. I'll post a visitor message on your profile.
That'll work
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